English Bulldog vs Pug: Which Dog Makes The Best Pet?

English Bulldog vs Pug, which pet is the right one for you? Should you get an English bulldog, Labrador Retriever, Boston Terrier, Pug or Jack Terrier? Deciding which breed to get for your first pet can be challenging, hopefully, this article will help you understand the differences between the English Bulldog vs Pug.

English Bulldog vs Pug

Both of these are small-sized companion dogs that are ideal for apartment living, with the Bulldog being much bigger in size. They are brachycephalic dogs, which means that they have their own set of health issues. However, there are unique differences in their temperament, health issues, life span, and maintenance.

Today, we’re going to be taking a closer look at both these breeds to help you see which one will make the best companion for you and your family.

English Bulldog vs Pug

Biggest Difference Between Bulldog and Pug

Most people tend to believe these two dogs are related. While they do have some similarities, the biggest differences between the two breeds are, Pugs are more active, alert, and smarter than the English Bulldog.

According to this Dog IQ ranking chart, the Pug ranks #57, while the English Bulldog ranks #77 on the intelligence scale. (source)

This means that a Pug will be easier to train than the Bulldog. English Bulldogs can be trained, but it will require more consistent training and patience. I’ll talk more about training both the Pug and Bull Dog later below. 

Origins Of The Pug and Bulldog

The Pug originated from China dating back to the Han Dynasty.

While the English Bulldogs were first bred in England as an entertainment dog, in the sport of bull-baiting, until it was outlawed in the mid-1800s.

After that, the breed has become a popular breed among American pet owners.

Do Pugs and English Bulldogs Get Along?

After doing some research, I found that both dogs get along fine, according to current pet owners. Both pooches are typically easy-going. As puppies, both are very energetic but typically mellow out with age.

They both form strong bonds with their human families and do extremely well with kids. They should do well together as long as you train them properly.

Now let’s take a closer look at each breed. Visit this article if you want to learn about the Chug Dog.

Pug vs Bulldog

Let’s take a closer look at these two breeds individually, to help you determine which one makes the perfect pet for you and your family.

Pug Overview

bulldog and Pug difference

A Pug is known from curly Q tail, smashed wrinkly face, and bulging eyes. They originated in China as early as 551 BC.

The colors of Pugs vary from:

  • Fawn
  • Black
  • Silver
  • Apricot Fawn
  • White (extremely rare)

However, only the black and Fawn colored ones are recognized by the AKC. (American Kennel Club)

The average lifespan is 12-15 years, read up more on their life expectancy. The price of a Pug can vary from $1,500 – $2,000 depending on where you live and the breeder.


This breed is highly intelligent, due to its charming and comical expressions. They are stubborn but respond well to positive training and plenty of treats. (Zukes Mini Naturals)

This breed will take advantage of poor training and can make it challenging to get them to do what you want them to. It’s important to establish rules and boundaries for your pet early on.


They are often referred to as the “class clown” of dog breeds.

They love attention and will lovingly follow their owners around. They are extremely adaptable and can do well in any lifestyle setting, as long as you give them attention.

Pugs are bred as toy dogs or companion dogs, that will be happy lying around watching Netflix all day. If you prefer an active lifestyle, it’s important to avoid hot temperatures.


This breed is a brachycephalic dog, meaning “short skull.” They have elongated palates that can lead to several health issues such as Pug breathing problems.

Especially, when they spend a lot of time in warmer temperatures. You’ll want to make sure that you avoid extended exposure to hot weather.

They have other health problems that you should be aware of as a new pet owner.

This breed does best on a harness as a collar can trigger their breathing problems. The Puppia RiteFit Harness is perfect for Brachycephalic breeds.

Unlike other dogs, they shed year-round due to their double layer coat. You’ll want to make sure that you have a good vacuum and lint brush.

The cute wrinkles that everyone loves will need to be cleaned often. Also, they do have some distinct Pug smells that you should be aware of. They can fart, snort, and make all kinds of loud noises that you may not have heard.


As I mentioned above, the Pug intelligence ranking is higher than the Bulldog. This means they should be easier to train.

However, Pugs are known to be stubborn and you will need to have patience with the training.

Exercise Requirements

Pugs are small brachycephalic dogs that require at least 30 minutes of daily exercise. Due to their brachycephalic nature, you’ll want to avoid exercising them in extremely hot temperatures, as they can have trouble breathing.

What Does A Bulldog Look Like?

The English Bulldog has a round build, broad shoulders, and a short low hung tail. Like the Pug, they tend to have an overbite, however, the English Bulldog’s is more pronounced.

Which means that the Bulldog can sometimes suffer from an extreme underbite. They usually have a large round skull, with broad foreheads.

They generally have short pointed ears that are known as “rose ears.” Like the Pug, their ears tend to fall to the side of their head rather than standing straight up.

If you’ve ever seen a Bulldog puppy, then you know they are extremely adorable!

English Bulldog Overview

English Bulldog

The English bulldog was bred in the early 13th century, to fight bulls also known as bull baiting. (this is where the name “bulldog comes from) This breed descended from the ancient Mastiffs.

Like the Pug, they are brachycephalic dogs, which can be troublesome for dogs.

This breed is known for their wide, pug-nosed snouts and stocky bodies. They look like miniature bulls.

Like the Pug, they can be found in various colors:

  • Red brindle
  • All other brindles
  • Solid White
  • Solid red, fawn or fallow
  • Piebald
  • Inferior qualities of the foregoing

The preferred color of the breed is the red brindle. This is a distinctive breed that has loose skin on the head, furrowed brows, small ears, pushed-in nose, and an extreme underbite.

Unlike the Pug, this dog can weight up to 50 pounds, but they will still want to curl on your lap to watch TV.

They are an easy-going breed that enjoys brisk walks. Like Pugs, they’ll do best on hot Summer afternoons inside an air-conditioned room.

The average lifespan is 8-10 years. English Bulldog price will vary from $1,500 – $4,000 which is much more than the Pug.


This is an intelligent breed, you’ll just need to have patience. When training, you’ll need to give them commands several times before they understand what you want.

They are very loyal and want to seek hard to get their owners approval. They’ll do well with positive reinforcement training.

These pooches are gentle and do well with consistent training. Raising your voice can upset them and cause them to withdraw, which will set your training back and make them more stubborn.

Read this to learn more about the traits of a Pug to find out if it’s the right pooch for you.


This breed was bred to be aggression to help butchers control their livestock. Over time, they have transitioned to sweet, mellow, dogs. They give off the appearance of being aggressive and grumpy.

They make great pets and do well around children. Most bulldogs will get along very well with other pets, however, may act aggressively towards other dogs of the same sex.

Some do not get along with cats. Like Pugs, they love eating, the difference is that Bulldogs can be aggressive around their food.

Stubbornness seems to be an epidemic for both breeds. Bulldogs can be difficult to train, so you’ll need to ensure you have plenty of patience and determination.

However, they can be trained properly with positive reinforcement and plenty of treats.


The saying “They are so ugly they’re cute” is definitely true. Like the Pug, they have their own unique smells, they’ll need proper grooming.

They do shed, but it won’t be extremely noticeable on your furniture, ground, or clothing. (unless you’re wearing dark clothes) Their coat is smooth and fine.

Like the Pug, they struggle with health problems because they are a brachycephalic pooch. They do well in apartments, condos, or homes.

This breed does best in temperament climates and will do best in an environment that has both heating and air conditioning.

Training English Bulldog

This breed is more stubborn than the Pug and will require more patience. This breed is sensitive and does best with positive reinforcement training.

The biggest thing to remember is that you need to be consistent with your training.

Exercise Requirements

Like Pugs, the English Bulldog is a brachycephalic dog breed. This breed needs at least 30 minutes of moderate daily exercise. Due to the brachycephalic nature, you’ll want to avoid walking them in hot temperatures.

Do Pugs Have Bulldog In Them?

As you can see both breeds are different and some similarities like being brachycephalic canines. However, they are not related and come originated from different parts of the world.

When you start researching both breeds, you will notice there is quite a bit of difference between Pug and Bulldogs.

DNA testing has proven that Pugs are not a part of the English Bulldog family. Both breeds have the same body characteristics, which can make it seem like they are related.

However, the Pugs were bred by the Chinese and were considered royal dogs and were kept in royalty.

English Bulldog Pug Temperament

Both canines are strong-willed which can make it difficult to train. They’ll do best with pet owners who understand positive reinforcement training.

You’ll do best if you can start training them at an early age, preferably puppies. Both breeds love human companionship and want to please their owners.

Pugs are not known to be aggressive towards other animals or people. While the English Bulldog can show signs of aggression towards unfamiliar, or same-sex dogs.

English Bulldog Life Expectancy

Pugs tend to have a longer lifespan than English Bulldogs. The average English Bulldog lifespan is around 8-10 years. Read this article to find out how long a Pug lives.

Regardless of whether you choose a Pug or Bulldog, you should know that the life expectancy of any dog will be determined by overall health, diet, and lifestyle.

English Bulldog Pug Size

Both tail-wagger’s have the same stocky frame. The biggest difference is that the Bulldog is much bigger and heavier than the Pug.

The average height of a Pug:

  • Female: 10 inches (at the withers)
  • Male: 12 inches (at the withers)

This breed can weigh between 14-20 pounds.

The average height of an English Bulldog is:

  • Female: 12-16 inches
  • Male: 12-16 inches.

The female can weigh 40-51 lbs while the male will average 51-55 pounds.

Both breeds are prone to obesity, so you’ll want to make sure that you exercise them on a regular basis.

Do They Get Along?

Watch this cute video of a Pug and English Bulldog playing together. This will help you see how they play, the noises they make and how easy they get along.

English Bulldog and Pug Mix

Breeders have started cross-breeding the English Bulldog with the Pug. These designer dogs are known as the “Bull Pug.” The crossbreeding results in a medium replica of both dogs.

This is a great dog for anyone who loves the Bulldog but doesn’t have the room for a purebred. It has a gentle demeanor that makes it a great pet for anyone with kids or other animals, in fact, you can read an in-depth review of the Pug English Bulldog Mix.

English Bulldog and Pug Puppies

Both are extremely cute and will win over your heart quickly. Regardless of what type of pup you get, there are essentials you need before bringing them home.

You’ll want to make sure that you have water and food bowls, dog beds, grooming brushes (this brush is amazing for controlling the shedding problem), crates, and a folding gate to keep your puppy in one area until they are properly house trained. I’ve put together some of the best water and food bowls for Pugs.

It’s important to find take your pup to the veterinarian to make sure they are healthy and don’t have any health issues. You may want to consider getting pet insurance while they are young and in good health.

Begin training them as soon as you bring them home. The sooner you can start training them, the easier it will be to train them. Both breeds are strong-willed and it will take time to set those boundaries.

These are the best brushes for Pugs to help with the shedding problem.

French Bulldog vs English Bulldog vs Pug

French Bulldog vs English Bulldog vs Pug

Some people get the English Bulldog and French Bulldog confused as they have similar features. I’ve written an in-depth review of the French Bulldog vs Pug that will help you learn more about this breed.

All three of these pooches will make great pets. According to this intelligence ranking, Pug ranks the highest on the fair working/obedience training chart.

This ranking system states how easy it will be for the breed to understand new commands.

Unfortunately, the Bulldog ranks 77, which means that you’ll have to repeat the commands 80-100 times before they understand what you’re wanting them to do.

Pug or English Bulldog?

We’ve taken an in-depth look at both breeds, you should have a good idea of which one will make the best family pet. If you’re still confused and can’t decide which one is right for you, then you may want to consider an English Bulldog Pug mix.

Compare The Pug To Other Breeds

Pug vs Beagle

Related Questions

Are English Bulldogs and Pugs Related?

While both breeds have some differences, if you dig deep into their history, you will see they are actually related.

How Big Do English Bulldogs Get?

Like the Pug, these dogs don’t get very big. You can expect a full-grown English Bulldog to be around 14-15 inches tall.

Do English Bulldogs Get Along With Other Dogs

Most of them will have no problem getting along with dogs of the opposite sex.

Should I Get Pet Insurance for My English Bulldog?

Regardless of whether you get a Pug or a Bulldog for your family, pet insurance can help you save money from any unexpected health bills. Click here to get a pet insurance quote

Final Word

Both the Pug and Bulldog can make amazing pets. They’ll both do great in households that have time to devote and spend time with them.

Regardless of which pooch you get, it’s important to know about all the responsibilities that come with owning a dog.

Make sure you do your due diligence on both breeds before getting one. Are you planning on getting one from a breeder or adopting one?

Responsible pet owners understand that a Puppy is just a pup for their first year. Your Pup will be an adult longer than it is a puppy.

Related Articles

References and Further Reading

Kimberly Alt – Bulldog: Get The Low Down On This Breed

American Kennel Club: About the Bulldog

Team PetCareRX – English Bulldog Care and Training Facts

Black Pug Site